Using profiling to build an effective board of directors

Using profiling to build an effective board of directors

An effective board of directors needs a balance of members. The individual directors who make up this important team at the head of an organisation need a representative spread of skills, contacts and experience. However, if they lack the balance of personality that is needed in any team, they will fail to achieve their potential. Profiling can help build a balanced and effective board.

Directors' profiles

Individual and team profile analysis is a systematic procedure designed to measure personal behavioural styles. Profiling helps individuals gain an understanding of their working style, how this impacts on their relationships with others in the business environment, and how they might develop to improve their effectiveness both as a person and as a professional. It enables them to further enhance their inter-personal skills, improving team performance and creating a more positive, productive cultural environment.

Psychometric profiling is an essential tool in recruiting directors and building a board. Brefi Group uses a range of traditional personality profiling systems that identify motivation and demonstrate how and why individual directors relate to each other in various situations. These carry a powerful message: "Not all people are like me. Therefore, I must be prepared to treat different people differently; I can learn to accept that others might enjoy tasks that are chores to me – and vice versa – and I must recognise that leadership in a discussion can move from person to person according to circumstances."

When you know who you are, you can match what you should be doing. If you consistently try to operate outside your natural profile, you will be less effective and experience stress. While all people's profiles are equally valid, some aspects might be a strength in some situations and counter productive in others.

Traditional profiling systems include those based on original work by Carl Jung, William Moulton Masterson and Meredith Belbin. Here are some that Brefi Group finds particularly useful: -

Personal profiling and colours workshop

The colours workshop can be delivered as a stand-alone workshop or integrated into a team building programme. Delegates are asked to complete a simple on-line questionnaire in advance, which is then analysed by Brefi Group for presentation at the workshop. From the responses to the questionnaire, we are able to produce a detailed report for each team member, which gives an insight into:

  • General characteristics
  • Value to the organisation
  • Checklist for communicating
  • Communication tips
  • Perceptions
  • Descriptors
  • Natural and adapted styles
  • Areas for improvement

The report distinguishes between an individual's natural style and how he/she adapts this style in response to a specific environment.

The workshop starts with a full description of the history and theory behind the Jungian profiling process and its relationship with other well known psychometric tests. This ensures that delegates are able to understand the implications of their results before they receive them. The results are then distributed and delegates given time to read them. Ideally this is arranged so that they have an overnight break before the next stage in which they are able to clarify any points with the facilitator.

Use the colours wheel for teambuilding

Subject to the agreement of all parties, individual results are combined and displayed on a graphical behavioural factor indicator to demonstrate how the team operates. The facilitator then leads a discussion about the relationships and behaviour that are likely to be displayed in this team and how this explains or challenges the team's effectiveness. Finally, the team prepares an action plan, which might include changing responsibilities or considering different recruitment practices.

Now consult Brefi Group about how profiling can help you make you or your board more effective.

Wealth dynamics profiling

We particularly favour a more recently developed profiling system that defines eight profiles in terms of the roles in which different individuals are most likely to be successful and which relates these to the stages of business growth and the business cycle. Developed by Roger Hamilton, it is designed to help people identify their most powerful path to wealth. However, it also provides a powerful new approach to building a board of directors.

You can find out more about this powerful system and discover your wealth profile at www.knowyourprofile.com.

The Wealth Dynamics Profiling system provides clarity on your path of least resistance to wealth creation. Wealth Dynamics is an evolution of Jungian psychometric testing into specific action & thinking dynamics that relates to entrepreneurs. It goes back to the roots of personality profiling in Chinese philosophy, which precedes Western psychometric testing by 2,500 years. Rather than just being a profiling report and list of soft recommendations, Wealth Dynamics provides an intuitive system which will equip directors with:

  • Clarity on the path of least resistance to success.
  • One of eight paths with a list of identifiable role models & biographies.
  • A six-step process to building the right team and focusing on the right activity.
  • Links to the growth stages in business, giving clarity on leadership succession.

The wealth dynamics profiles

The eight roles are: Creator, Star, Supporter, Dealmaker, Trader, Accumulator, Lord and Mechanic. Here are summaries of the eight profiles and how they best work together: -

Wealth Dynamics profiles

Creators can't resist creating. They keep creating long after they have run out of resources, money and other people's patience. In fact, they have their greatest creative breakthroughs after most others would have given up.

Successful creators have delegated everything except the creative process itself - and they focus on creating new products, or new companies, while others take care of the day-to-day business.

The Creators set the stage, and the Stars steal the show. Stars get most valuable feedback in the limelight, and find their flow while on their feet. As a result, they are able to evolve their attraction on the fly, and it is their personal magnetism that is their greatest value.

Successful stars are happy to leverage on the products and platform of others in order to perform their magic. They lead from the front with their name shining in lights, while others count the receipts.

While Stars are busy shining, Supporters are busy lighting up others. Supporters are the strongest leaders, as they can translate value into action through people.

Some successful supporters can be found in their own businesses - such as public relations, headhunting and consulting, where others will pay big bucks for access to the people they know. Where others would take months to find the right person, it often takes supporters just one phone call.

While stars are high in the sky, deal makers have their ear to the ground. Creating value through timing, not innovation, a deal maker lives in the present.

Of all the profiles, the deal makers rely most on the relationships around them. They are constantly on the phone and on the move. They create wealth by spotting connections in the market. Once the deal is done, the new value created enriches everyone involved.

Traders are masters of timing but, unlike Deal Makers who make their money by bringing assets and resources together, Traders will buy and sell the assets and make their money from the spread.

Traders need to detach themselves so that they remain grounded while others might be losing their heads. Value comes from waiting and surfing the right wave while others get caught up in the current.

Accumulators make money by buying and holding on rising tides. Accumulators always prepare and the most successful ones can be found doing their homework.

Steady and dependable, they rarely act on impulse, and fail if they have not set the criteria to take action. Often accused of procrastinating, they simply need more data to make an informed decision.

Once Accumulators connect to the right team, they can quickly be lifted while keeping the team grounded. They ensure that everything is in order and that what needs to get done gets done on time. Successful Accumulators are happy to remain down-to-earth, holding the kite strings while others fly high.

Lords love the detail, and are renowned for their thrift. They can squeeze out the cash flow from assets without needing to own the assets. Whether commodity lords or landlords, they have the patience and diligence to collect and crank up every cent of cash flow they find. While extrovert Supporters value people over numbers, introvert Lords value numbers over people, and don't have time for politics or niceties. They would rather deal with simple legwork than fancy footwork.

Lords love certainty and hate risk. Many Lords cannot resist their tendency to micro-manage, to which cash flow responds well but to which people do not. Successful Lords are unrelenting once they have found their niche, with the ability to consistently generate cash flow without the need for either innovation or timing, weathering market conditions and acquiring the competition until they are dominating entire industries.

Mechanics are great at finishing things. They are perfectionists, which is why they cannot resist finding ways to do things better. They get hands-on with their systems and prefer to study how to improve things with their hands dirty. As a result, they have little interest in impressing with or indulging in their appearance.

Many Mechanics have companies with better systems than their competitors, but they have not leveraged these systems with stronger products produced by others, or their business is limited by their autocratic management style and high staff turnover. Successful Mechanics remain hands-on, fine-tuning their systems long after they have delegated many other areas of their business. This is where they see the greatest results, and where they gain the most satisfaction.

Discover your own wealth dynamics profile at www.knowyourprofile.com.

Now consult Brefi Group about how profiling can help you make you or your board more effective.

The Adfen E-Scale Enneagram

The Adfen E-Scale, by using The Enneagram , assists organisations to make the most of human diversity . It describes nine structures of interpretation and brings an understanding and a compassion for differences. The Enneagram is an extraordinary framework for understanding yourself, your associates and colleagues, and the ?personality? of your team or organisation as a whole.

Each structure of interpretation within The Enneagram has its own set of perceptions and preoccupations, its own values and approaches to life. Each relates to others in different but understandable ways.

Speaking the language of others:

By understanding the different structures of interpretation we can "speak the language" of others who "see" the world differently from ourselves. Real communication becomes possible, and we are able to deal more effectively with conflicts, ineffective work habits, office politics, and different leadership styles. If we want to maximise our effectiveness, we need to learn how to lead different types of people and how to relate to different types of clients. Perhaps most importantly, the Enneagram gives each individual a clear picture of their own structure of interpretation and their possibilities for growth.

A simplified overview of the nine different viewpoints:

The Enneagram

Ennea-view One: Conscientious, purposeful, responsible & precise
Dislikes carelessness and unreliability, sets high standards for self and others.

Ennea-view Two: Warm, affirming, compassionate & nurturing
Dislikes isolation and lack of people contact, thrives on service to others and making personal connections.

Ennea-view Three: Efficient, motivating, goal-orientated & industrious
Dislikes ineffiency and lack of ambition, thrives on success and recognition.

Ennea-view Four: Intuitive, refined, distinctive & instrospective
Dislikes uniformity and boredom, expresses through feelings and aesthetics.

Ennea-view Five: Observant, innovative, logical & objective
Dislikes intrusiveness, enjoys consistent learning in their particular field.

Ennea-view Six: Loyal, responsible, cautious & tenacious
Dislikes instability and constant change, good trouble-shooters.

Ennea-view Seven: Enthusiastic, visionary, gregarious & spontaneous
Dislikes attention to detail and routine, enjoys constructing new ideas.

Ennea-view Eight: Assertive, autonomous, decisive & fearless
Dislikes lack of focus and dishonesty, supports strength and action.

Ennea-view Nine: Patient, reassuring, easy going & diplomatic
Dislikes conflict and strife, supports harmony and stability.

Guideline:

Each structure of interpretation is value-neutral: no structure of interpretation is inherently better or worse than any other one. Each has assets and liabilities, qualities useful to an organisation and qualities that impede harmony, communication and growth.

Profiling is a valuable tool in building a board of directors or recruiting new directors. Different profiling systems give different insights into how and why individuals and team perform. Discover how Wealth Dynamics can help you make you or your board more effective.

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